Voodoo Experience 2010 | Review | Pics

Voodoo Experience :: Day Two :: Saturday, October 30

Buckwheat Zydeco @ Voodoo '10
1. Buckwheat Zydeco :: 6:45 p.m. :: Soco/WWOZ Stage
Just a good old-fashioned foot stomper. The king of contemporary zydeco emanated and incited exuberance that was a nice contrast to the awful Die Antwoord performance moments before down at the Le Plur tent. Almost wholly unfamiliar with the genre, all I can really say is that Buckwheat's jubilation-inducing brand of swamp rock was a stellar and unique form of dance music and the Lafayette, LA native represented the local genre very well. Also, a nice version of "Bourbon Street Parade" served as a nice reminder that Mardi Gras is only 125 days away.

2. Florence and the Machine :: 6:00 p.m. :: Sony Make.Believe Stage
Frontwoman Florence Welch floated around on a flowery stage like a whirling dervish, and the set was quite simply an hour showcase of Welch's amazing vocal instrument and theatrical wherewithal. It was abundantly clear from the first song that we were in the presence of a true freak of nature, a beautiful oddity and a rising superstar. Her band is no machine, but the redheaded singer is a force to be reckoned with, evoking comparisons to the soul-blues-pop divas of the Motown era. Watching her highly choreographed and assured performance, you would think she's been at this for decades, but Welch is still young and armed with a creative mind. It'll be interesting to watch where she goes from here. The elegant and confident Machine made a lot of new fans in City Park on Saturday, including this writer.

3. The Whigs :: 4:00 p.m. :: Sony Make.Believe Stage
The Athens, GA natives are already veterans of the festival scene, and after opening for Kings of Leon this summer and fall, they are no longer a stranger to the big stages and amphitheatres. Parker Gispert's familiar grungy growl and amazing flexibility (Gispert's leg kicks and stretches never cease to amaze) on older songs "Like A Vibration" and "Already Young" accented the frantic pummeling of drummer Julian Dorio throughout the high energy performance. As per usual, Dorio went through enough drum sticks to tear down a shady grove, and it was nice to see The Whigs haven't abandoned some of the deeper tracks from their excellent first two albums Give ‘Em All A Big Fat Lip and Mission Control. Gispert's tireless enthusiasm ensured that the crowd remained actively involved throughout the performance while keeping the between-song chatter to a minimum and focusing on maintaining a feverish pace throughout the set.

Street Sweeper @ Voodoo '10
4. Street Sweeper Social Club :: 8:00 p.m. :: Sony Make.Believe Stage
As lead singer/rapper Boots Riley said, SSSC's guitarist sounds a whole lot like the guy from Rage Against The Machine (Voodoo headliners in 2007). This is probably helped by the fact that the axe man for the uniformed social club - Boots insists they are a social club not just a band - is none other than Rage's Tom Morello. Unsurprisingly, the same sort of bombastic, fiercely polemical music is the end product, and a heavy take on M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes" was a conscious nod to another artist refusing to conform to normative views and behavior. It was only a matter of time before the sloganeering banter against Big Brother, mixed with the thrash happy hip-hop pummeling, made it's appearance, and Riley didn't miss the opportunity to comment on the current political climate.

Best Random Festival Quirk on Saturday: The moving techno robot down the main spine of the festival - the only mobile party on the grounds. Bring it back next year, mysterious trance master, whoever you are.

Most Unexpected Cover on Saturday: Paul Sanchez & The Rolling Road Show doing Kanye West's "Heartless"

LATE NIGHT: Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue's midnight set at Tipitina's Uptown.

Continue reading for Sunday Highlights...

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